Basic hauberk
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Joined: February 14, 2017
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Basic hauberk
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Posted on Tue Feb 14, 2017 3:08 pm
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so i have browsed and used this site for a long time.. this is the first time ive posted.

ive made several coifs, countless pieces of jewelry, dice bags, and even a backpack (ask for pics, very proud Very Happy )

but i now feel i need to make a hauberk to complete my self-apprenticeship.

but i dont have any idea how to approach this logistically.

ive made a few inquiries into getting the parts for this and i got quotes of $500 US for just the rings.

this seems ludicrous, so im guessing im either estimating the number of rings required wrong or not looking in the right place to buy them.

i would love lots of input on what would be a good guage and ID to use for a totally non funcional hauberk that would basically be a "t-shirt"

also any good places to get the rings and what material to use would be appreciated.

Joined: February 15, 2002
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Posted on Tue Feb 14, 2017 7:08 pm
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For a shirt, a great resource is https://web.archive.org/web/20160508055350/http://homepage.ntlworld.com/trevor.barker/farisles/guilds/armour/mail.htm. Hooray for archive.org's way back machine, as this resource no longer appears to be on the normal web, or maybe just the server is experiencing a hiccup. My current favorite shirt ring size is 16 ga (.063) x 5/16 I.D. (nominal).


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Joined: February 14, 2017
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Posted on Tue Feb 14, 2017 7:24 pm
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at first i thought this wouldnt be help then i actually read through it... funny how that works.

great info on the actual building of it. but im trying to just get the stuff to make it right now.

how many rings do i actually need?
I just want a bastardized "hauberk" really just a glorified t-shirt that will make me look cool at a ren-fest. B-)

im thinking of using 16ga 5/16 ID just becuase thats what ive used for most of my projects in large maille. not set on that. i know larger ID will make faster work, but how big is "too big"?

i also was thinking of using bright aluminum. but on further thought, would the rings be strong enough to not get pried open by the weight?

Joined: December 28, 2016
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Ring calculation
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Posted on Tue Feb 14, 2017 10:14 pm
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Try these tools at The Ring Lord, they might help.

http://theringlord.com/cart/shopcontent.asp?type=howmany

http://theringlord.com/cart/shopcontent.asp?type=FindStatsHelp

Joined: March 10, 2015
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Posted on Wed Feb 15, 2017 4:44 pm
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Hip-length shirt w/ short sleeves in 16g 5/16" will be in the rough ballpark of 20K rings. Those rings in aluminum are fine for parade armor, but will pop if you are rough with them. With normal ren-fest wear and tear, expect to repair a few rings every year.

In my experience, my 12g 1/2" shirt gets more attention at cons and fests than my 16g 1/4" shirt. I'm sure there is some point where rings become "too big", but a little exaggeration makes good theater.

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Posted on Fri Feb 17, 2017 4:13 am
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TRL sells kits that have enough rings for a tee the size of an average man. https://theringlord.com/cart/shopdisplayproducts.asp?id=90&cat=Chainmail+Armor+Kits they come with instructions for less than 500$ but the rings are not saw cut. you could also buy some cutters and make you own rings from wire. If you choose aluminum saw cutting it by hand is fairly easy compared to other metals.

Joined: March 27, 2002
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Posted on Tue Feb 21, 2017 4:37 am
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dreadnought wrote:
great info on the actual building of it. but im trying to just get the stuff to make it right now.

how many rings do i actually need?


Think in terms of tens of pounds, particularly for steel. For Ren-wear, 16ga SWG (.063" dia) and ID of 1/4" or 5/16" should do fine. It'll also be finetextured and pretty mail, with a near-to-historic look to it even.

dreadnought wrote:
I just want a bastardized "hauberk" really just a glorified t-shirt that will make me look cool at a ren-fest. B-)


Let's not set the bar too low here. You're going to spend about two months doing this project, and that's enough time to actually fit it to you so it won't slide down through your cinch belt. You are *going* to want one to distribute its not inconsiderable weight. Do the tailoring thing with it and it will hug your waistline that little bit better.


dreadnought wrote:
i also was thinking of using bright aluminum. but on further thought, would the rings be strong enough to not get pried open by the weight?


Go with steel wire, and coil and cut your own. What you are building is *armor.* Not aerospace components. And you'd like not to go broke. Smile

A mid-thigh, long sleeve mailshirt (maybe half sleeve) is more Renaissance than a High Medieval full hauberk. See in the Articles part of the library for my "Hauberks for First-Timers" article -- but ignore what I wrote about the body barrel; that was a part of mailling I didn't know when I wrote that. The rest of it's held up pretty good.


'The Minstrel Boy to the War is gone...'

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Posted on Tue Feb 21, 2017 4:38 am
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A butted shirt would go 20-27 lb. Roughly three coffee cans full of steel links. Three to four large coifs' worth, assuming a shoulder cowl and that you're not stopping at the collar line; in history mail coifs didn't do that.

A mail T-shirt is lighter, and may, if you're thin, come up less than 20 lb, so we're looking at two coffee cans full. Insist on them having their lids, for you know what spilled links can be like, and ten pounds of links is a lot. Got an orange bucket from Home Depot? About half full -- and get the lid. Mail T shirts are known in maillers' parlance as byrnies. It's a very old Northern European word, and all it really means is "armor." "Mail" comes from, originally, those jolly boys from sunny Italy, and their Latin. And their word seemed basically to mean something like 'spotty.' May have something to do with the fish-scales reflections of flattened links.

A byrnie is short, but let not your byrnie's hem hang at the level of your nuts. In three steps and three words, ow ow ow. Above nut level or a little below.

You're going to have a more crafty byrnie, handsomer at Faire, if you go ahead and put short sleeves on it, with the ease behind the sleeves (that widening add-in at each shoulder blade) to give the short sleeve the necessary forward bias for fighting agility. You'll know you have it right, even if the average Fairegoer hasn't a clue. The ones who are above average will compliment your craftmanship and understanding; it's worth the trouble.

It is no harder to make a shirt this correct way than to make a shirt wrong. And it's only slightly more -- well I wouldn't say complex, but it's well within your knowledge of mail expansions and contractions. That experience is all you need.

Aluminum is soft enough to compare with lead in things like this. Fighting shirts have been made of aluminum for rattan-fighter groups -- using very fat wire with very tight link AR. Looks like a shirt of silver macaroni. Steel wire, in contrast, has the right look. (The way to get steel links to make a light shirt is to go to the bother of riveting the stuff and using 18ga wire, .048" or so. 19ga works too. Max bragging rights. Also takes longer. And will stop a knife or a sword.)


'The Minstrel Boy to the War is gone...'

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Posted on Tue Feb 21, 2017 10:18 am
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Rather than what I said in my article in the site Library section, I would now base my body barrel circumference on my waistline measurement, with enough slack on there to pass my shoulders through without getting stuck. This is still likely to come out as my waistline measurement, natural waistline at belly button level, plus ten to twelve inches. I would expand the chest size of the shirt by five to six inches more than waist + 12. A little extra beats a little too small; mail needs its slack to work right, and to facilitate getting in and out of your shirt, which my article does cover. You may already have seen it at some SCA fighter practice if you hang out with them.

Don't use one of your t-shirts for sizing, or you will make the perfect mail shirt for your little brother. Take measurements with a tailors' tape measure, like your mom has if she sews.

A tailored mailshirt has a slight waist to it, not exactly an hourglass. A shirt actually tailored for a big-breasted woman may look more hourglass-like. Mailed curves can be *very* attractive. Be careful; stepping on your tongue is a helluva way to find out the living room carpet needs cleaning.

Any price approaching a dollar a pound for steel wire is a good price. Two bucks is still not so bad. You can see from up-thread what a difference that makes buying materials. The more you DIY, the fewer dollars you'll shell out.


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Joined: February 22, 2017
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Thanks
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Posted on Wed Feb 22, 2017 10:33 am
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Hi there,

Just thought I'd chime in and say a huge thank you to Zlosk for that webarchive link!

I'm partway through my second hauberk and I thought I'd stray away from the basic barrel & straps approach with this second attempt but alas all the handy links detailing differing designs available in some of the older posts seem to have been removed; that is to say their content is no longer available.

Konstantin the Red, you've quoted that same website many times but until now I've been unable to locate a functioning link: I don't know if this forum allows it but perhaps you could update some of those links to one such as Zlosk provided. It's a real handy resource but it's rather difficult to find.

Thanks again,
TheSoundMan000

Joined: March 27, 2002
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Posted on Mon Feb 27, 2017 6:22 am
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I'll check and see if my link has decayed. This stuff does happen...

Oh boy, no fun no joy... "taking too long to respond." Damn; after all these years. Nothing happening for NTLworld either.

May have to dig back to references to the Wallace Collection A2 mail shirt, which is what the NTLworld page linked to, to copy its construction as the page did.

Looking at how the Wallace A2 was put together, it seems its method was to assemble shirts and other mail pieces using rectangles of plain-weave mail made up ahead of time. There are numerous expansion links in the shirt, but they are confined to particular places in the shirt, seemingly located at the edges of definable rectangular mailpatches where some expanding or contracting is called for. These rectangles were not all the same size, and some were squares.

Wallace A2 did not use any 45-degree joins. (Some standards-of-mail -- collars -- did.)

Expansions/contractions are densest concentrated in two vertical zones in the back of the shirt, widening and easing the back at the height of the shoulder blades and then tapering down to nothing added by the waist. These zones, from top to bottom, have a triangular expansion array from the shoulder line or lapping over it a little, descending to a smallish central patch of straight, plain weave E4-1, and bottomed out by a triangular array of contractions, which are just the same as expansions, inverted. These arrays were especially easy to zip into the rest of the weave because all their edges, their borders, were entirely of ordinary E4-1 weave. They were just all fattened up inside.

Expansion arrays have the tremendous advantage of being able to deliver as much or as little expansion as necessary. The triangles of mail they make can be of any height and any degree of taper along that height. Just by how many expansion links you stuff in or don't.

Make certain that as you start a pair of triangular expansion arrays from peak to base that the apex links are both in the same link-lie (slanting right or slanting left) or they will *not* fit into the same linkrow in the shirt or whatever and will make its construction rather erratic and asymmetrical. This is less of a big whoop in a piece that only has one triangular expansion/contraction array.


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Posted on Mon Feb 27, 2017 6:50 am
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Soundman, my article on "Hauberks For First Timers, Second Timers, and Third" can walk you through a circular or oval mantletop shirt if you like.

The type's big difference from a B&S or the Wallace A2 European Modified Square That Has Wedges Stuck In is the shoulder section is constructed in a circle or oval, the linkrows tracking in concentric curves like the stripes of a braided rug. Circle or oval both seem to work each about as well as the other, since your oval doesn't have to be too extreme. This is a fine way to build the cowl of a mail coif. Features many expansions included, averaging three to four expansions into each linkrow -- four per linkrow gives you a flat steel doily; three per linkrow make it a shallow cone. Well, at your shoulders, you're more or less conical. And the cowl is slightly lighter weight.

By the time you get done with a B&S filling in the gaps, the shoulder is a rectangle of mail anyway, with a neck hole that sits forward of its centerline. It will work a little better if the rear ends of the straps are attached to the back of the shirt farther apart than they are spaced in the front of the shirt, to help with forward sleeve bias.

That method was not, apparently, the one they used. Perhaps it did not give *enough* forward freedom to the sleeves.


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